Tzaneen - Julius Malema has warned the police that ordinary people will revolt if they continue to shoot at them.
The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader said this at Relela village outside Tzaneen in Limpopo while addressing his supporters.
Violence at Relela and neighbouring villages flared up last week after three people were shot dead, allegedly by police.
“People will rise against the police if they are not aware that the sooner they change their attitude, the better,” he told a small crowd at a community hall.
“Because the more they continue to shoot an innocent soul, the more they are evoking the fighting spirit of our people.”
“People of Relela, you must not lose your fighting spirit,” he said.
Earlier, two residents of Relela, Mahlatse Pilusa and Zanele Mafomo told The Star that they hated the police.
“We don’t want the police here. Police are killers,” said Pilusa.
Last week, national police commissioner General Riah Phiyega defended the police, saying they acted to protect themselves.
Malema blamed President Jacob Zuma, Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa and Phiyega for the protesters’ death.
“They no longer care about a black person,” said Malema.
He went on to canvass votes for his party, saying the government had become arrogant. “During the elections, the councillors will come to you and say ‘Together we can do more’, but after the elections they will say ‘vuk’uzenzele (wake up and do it for yourself).’”
Malema promised a better life if residents voted against the ANC.
Earlier, he visited the family of Khomotso Ragolane, 15, whose mutilated body was found in the veld on January 24.
He then went to see the family of Tshepo Baloyi, 15, who was killed the following day.
He also went to see the families of Clearance Molele, 17, and Stanley Selowa, 26. The two were killed last Tuesday at a satellite police station.
Malema offered Selowa’s family R10 000 and urged the other families to tell his party if they needed any help.
He offered the families of the three men killed by the police free legal assistance to sue the government. “We will not disappear. We shall be with you until justice is served.”